Derby surveyor makes £240k saving for Essex care home

A start-up firm of chartered surveyors has scored a huge saving for the owners of an Essex care home after project managing a major £2m refurbishment.   

Derby-based Invise Limited landed its longest and highest-value job to date when commissioned to oversee the refurbishment of the 67-room Moat House Care Home, in Great Dunmow, Essex.

The enormous year-long project, which saw a number of significant changes to the brief during this time, was eventually estimated to cost almost £2.4m. 

Yet, under the expert management of Invise’s managing director James Baker and associate director Nathan Lovett, the project, which was signed-off last week, came in 10 per cent (£240k) under budget.

“It’s almost unheard of that a refurbishment or construction project of this size comes in so far under budget, if at all,” said James, who founded Invise in 2020 during lockdown. 

“Something always comes up during the process that throws original estimates off kilter. That’s just how it is industry wide.

“But one of Invise’s top priorities when we are asked to project manage a job from start to finish is to ensure our client does not get any nasty surprises. Our mantra is always ‘deliver on time and on budget’ – yet on this occasion we actually improved massively on both. 

“We’re delighted with the achievement, especially as the goal posts moved a few times since we started the project last January. The scope of our work changed drastically between the starting and finishing points.”

The care home refurbishment was initially thought to be a six-month project involving some redecoration and general maintenance updates to the 12-year-old three-storey building.

But, along with a number of issues uncovered, such as inadequate fire-stopping throughout the building and various changes to the brief, the end result was a full-scale refurbishment involving new kitchens, bathrooms and almost taking the entire building back to a shell.

Among the tasks that Invise had to project manage was a change of layout to the upper floor of the care home, turning the existing rooms into six two-person apartments. This was in addition to the fully refurbished rooms and en suites in the remaining 61 bedrooms and multiple communal and administrative areas.

Moat House Care Home is one of around 40 residential care or nursing homes across the UK managed by Invise’s client Country Court Care, which has its head office in Peterborough.

Invise, which carried out initial building inspections in its role as chartered surveyors, followed by specification of works and project management, worked alongside main contractor Linx Construction. 


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